In her 2013 dissertation, Georginna LaNelle Martin explores the ways in which social class mediates the experiences of White, low-income, first-generation students as they progress through higher education. Using a critical theoretical lens, Martin analyzes how this aspect of their identity influenced how these students viewed themselves and others in the college context.
…the many hours low-income, first generation college students spend working in order to survive in college has consequences for how these students engage in, connect to, and experience life at college. For most students in the present study, earning a college degree meant a chance at “a better life” and an opportunity for “getting out” from under the socioeconomic hardship in which they were raised. Ironically, for most participants “getting out” of their home life meant “missing out” on the full college experience.
Georgianna LaNelle Martin. “Getting out, missing out, and surviving: the social class experiences of White, low-income, first-generation college students.” PhD (Doctor of Philosophy) thesis, University of Iowa, 2012.